Tri-County commission signs-off on recommended EDC changes

Submitted by Denise Molina on Mon, 06/04/2012 – 6:21am

The Tri-County Regional Planning Commission unanimously approved recommended changes to the Central Illinois Economic Development Council, Heartland Partnership. Peoria Public Radio’s Alex Rusciano reports:

Consultant Frank Knott of Vital Economy says the Heartland Partnership and Economic Development Council are valuable assets that need to be reorganized. Terry Kohlbuss is executive director of the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission. He says the next step is to form working groups to carry out the recommendations:

“They would want to do some research and analysis, and define exactly what should happen, how we should get to the point of having an independent EDC that’s a true public private partnership,” Kohlbuss says.

Kohlbuss says people from the private and public sectors will be on the groups. He says they hope to have steps planned out by this fall. The Illinois River Valley Council of Governments is also holding a meeting to approve Knott’s recommendations. Knott also recommended streamlining IRVCOG’s function with the Planning Commission to boost efficiency.

Renee Charles is the spokesperson for the Heartland Partnership. She says the EDC is discussing the recommendations with its investors. Woodford County Board member Larry Whitaker was also approved as Tri-County’s next chairperson starting in July